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Message from the Chairman, Board of Studies
Dear Students,
I am very happy to share a major change in the way the eligibility tests are being conducted. From fifth of June open book system of examination is being introduced in Sunday Test scheme. It is often felt that students are not gainfully benefiting by memorising by heart the cumbersome text of various statutes. They are not expected to cram them. It is more important to have clear understanding of various provisions of laws including their applicability and implications. Presently, Open Book Examination is being introduced under Eligibility Test Scheme (Sunday Tests) in Paper-3 : Business & Corporate Laws of Professional Education (Course-II); Paper-7 : Direct Taxes and Paper-8: Indirect Taxes of Final Course. Under the system students will be allowed to bring and consult the bare acts during the examination in the respective papers. For details students may refer to the announcement included in this issue.
The Institute has also decided that children of military and para-military forces who are killed in action should be exempted from payment of tuition and registration fees. This will, to some extent, reduce the financial hardships faced by such children and enable them to pursue this professional course.
Another significant information that will interest you is printing of compilation of suggested answers volumes in different subjects. Presently, suggested answers to the questions set in previous examinations of Professional Education (Examination - I) are being arranged topic wise. These should be ready by the end of June. In addition, compilation of Advanced Accountancy of Professional Education (Course - II) should also be ready by that time. This will provide a good reservoir of questions. Students may also be able to judge the trend and importance of different topics. However, a word of caution as in any public issue of shares/mutual funds, the trend which you identify may not continue. So, study all the subjects comprehensively in an elaborate manner.
In the recent past, Value Added Tax (VAT) has remained a hot issue in the country. A lot of debate has generated on the desirability and contents of VAT. Major trade associations have vehemently protested introduction of VAT and tried their best to stall it. Tax on sale is a state subject. Over the years unhealthy competition among states has brought in several anomalies and distortions in the sales tax regime. VAT seeks to address such problems. It should also facilitate a common market free of regional imbalances and cut costs in the long run. In this issue an article on VAT is being included.
In the month of May, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has released guidelines for merger/amalgamation of private sector banks. The guidelines include laying down the process of merger proposal, determination of swap ratios, disclosures, the stages at which Boards will get involved in the merger process and norms of buying/selling of shares by the promoters before and during the process of merger. Boards of the banks have to play a crucial role in the process of merger and amalgamation.
Further, the Finance Minister has tabled Taxation Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2005 in Lok Sabha which proposes several significant amendments in Direct and Indirect Taxes. Another bill, Special Economic Zone Bill, 2005 is also cleared by both the houses of parliament. The bill provides for a fiscal package, including 15-year tax holiday and single window clearance mechanism for the units in the zone. It also seeks to establish a single enforcement agency to ensure speedy trial and investigation of notified offences committed in such zones. In this issue, we are also covering its taxation aspects for the knowledge of the students.
Yours truly,
Jaydeep Narendra Shah

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